Sunday, December 31, 2006

Leaving 2006 - What Else Have We Left Behind?

A good reminder by Richard Clarke in today's WaPo of the numerous critical issues that faced the US and the world - none of which had anything to do with invading Iraq to find WMDs, oust Sadaam, make the world safer for ... or whatever Bush's excuse de jour is today.

While Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld & Co. were busy focusing their energies in what has to be one of the stupidest moves made by any administration, what were they (and by default, the US) ignoring?

What awaits us in 2007 in as bad as shape as it was in 2006 or worse? (sorry no happy presents in this posting).

Global Warming - despite Gore's hit film and a winter here in DC that averages 50-degrees a day, the only move I've noticed the Admin. making on global warming is to acknowledge that maybe polar bears won't survive it.

Russia - Bush stared into Putin's eyes and saw ... apparently whatever he wanted to see, as is Bush's way in life. The Russians have seen something else. Putin is scheduled to step down in 2009. Does anyone thing life there is getting or will get better? And don't delude yourself. A chaotic Russia can and probably will cause problems for all of us.

Latin America - Venezuela and Chavez is just the first in what is promising to be more left-leaning governments south of our border. Not something that worries me, but certainly something that is going to agitate whoever hits the White House after Bush.

Africa - Holocausts, every day wars, AIDS, poverty and hunger on unbelievable scales. Even as all this horror plays out in front of our eyes we can't do anything while all our energies are spread out in Iraq/Afghanistan. Little surprise the administration smiled when Ethiopia marched into Somalia recently.

Arms control - Hey, wasn't there a 3rd axis in that famed evil trio? While Kim makes noise and we pay attention from time to time, the administration has done little other than blame the Clinton administration for Kim. Gee, does that mean Republicans will finally start taking the blame for setting up Sadaam in the first place? Oops, sorry, momentarily I lived in that fantasy world of personal responsibility by government officials.

The Drug War - aka the other war we're losing. Although we did, oddly enough, help to set up the groundwork for Afghanistan's emerging role as a heroin-financed state. Well done Bush administration. Only this crowd could come up with something as mind boggling stupid as this.

Clarke's focus in this article is on international issues. Maybe that's because we're all far too aware of the impact the administration's Iraq-focused mindset has made on internal policies. Two years after Katrina, we're still not in any better position to help ourselves after natural disasters - let alone another attack. The homeland security dept. has become a national joke (is that 3 ounces of shampoo, or 2?) that hasn't made any strides toward cooperation with FBI, CIA or the rest of the alphabet soup agencies.

Americans continue to be homeless, hungry and poor. We've got health issues, boomers starting to retire in massive numbers (with all the economic impact that's going to make), schools that are leaving a whole lot behind, students who can't think, and national media that spends more time focusing on Brittany Spears' divorce than investigating government frauds and mis-use of funds.

2006 hasn't been a good year for anyone, and we can only hope that 2007 will be better. While it won't be as good as January 2009 - when Bush finally gets his butt and his third rate mind out of the White House - here's hoping that the administration finally starts to make at least a few right choices.


Anonymous buckarooskidoo said...

I'm with you on your final comment, but I am not holding my breath. I just read that President Bush called the Saddam execution "a step on the road to democracy(!)." If that isn't a third rate, or at least delusional, mind talking there, I'm living on Mars.
I wish for a modest reduction in the amount of atrociously bad government worldwide. Vladimir Putin? Nouri Al-Maliki? George W. Bush? The antediluvian throwback twins ruling Poland? Alexander Lukashenko? Bashir Al-Assad? Mahmoud Ahmadinejad? What circle of hell has disgorged these horrible people? I wish they would go back where they came from.

1:37 AM  

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